Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sweet Summertime!

Ohhhh, summer.  How I have missed you! 

School ended for me Thursday afternoon.  The kids performed in their concert in the morning and afternoon, so it was a very easy last day.  Their last day was Friday, but that was the tournament for me!  I am happy to say that we raised over $17,000.  We worked out butts off, but it was totally worth it.

So, my life has been a total whirlwind until today, when I was finally able to calm down enough to pull out my KitchenAid again!  I was able to make the Twix cheesecakes that Kenzie has been begging for.  I had to bust out the 40-year-old food processor to mash up the Oreos for the crust.  Let me just say that Oreos, sugar, and melted butter is a dangerous combination.  I may or may not have had a little extra, and I may or may not have eaten the remnants with a spoon until I felt like I might throw up.  Then the cheesecake part was quick to whip up, minus the unwrapping of 12 mini Twix candies!  Strangely, the recipe calls for them to be baked and then refrigerated overnight.  Obviously, Kenzie was not about to wait after hounding me to make these for weeks, so we waited about 2 hours and all was well.  Pat is over right now eating one and it seems perfectly chilled to me.  I'd say give it 3 hours if you want to be totally safe, but overnight is overkill.  These have gone over quite well; Kenzie says they are among the best things I have made, and even Nick ate them.  Clearly Mom hates them because she hates Oreos, cheesecake, and Twix, but that was expected.

Going in the oven!
Then for dinner I made creamy caprese pasta bake.  I have wanted to make this for over a week but kept being too busy, or going out instead, or having guests who are allergic to Parmesan (ohhh Tracy!).  Finally today I got to make it.  I love caprese salad, so I thought this sounded perfect.  Penne with creamy tomato sauce, grape tomatoes, basil, and cubes of fresh mozzarella - you can't go wrong with those ingredients!  It was also really quick to make, which is a plus.  I doubled it and we had 7 people at dinner, and plenty of leftovers.  I really liked it.  I do think it dried out a little too much in the oven,  so I would probably double the amount of sauce next time.  The tomatoes were great; I cut some in half and left others whole, and they were such a great pop of flavor!  It was also nice to have basil from my own garden. 

Tomorrow, being my first official day of summer, will be my last chance to cook or bake for a while (and even tomorrow is a maybe since I have a long to-do list).  I am going to California for a week for a wedding.  I will be staying in a house for 3 nights, so I may get to do some cooking.  I will keep you posted.  I feel like I have hit a blog milestone when I got a phone call the other day from Maddie asking questions about the lettuce wraps, since she has been making my recipes!  Very exciting.  Don't fret, blog readers (AKA, Maddie, Mom, and my aunts).  I'll be back :)

Twix cheesecakes
creamy caprese pasta bake

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